Eschatology, the doctrine of last things, is also the doctrine of first things because it is concerned with the goal of history. Of necessity, goals determine present-day action. We are not motivated to action unless we know the purpose for our action. Specific goals motivate us. If we believe that the main and final goal of the Christian life is heaven, or the salvation of our souls, we will be indifferent to history and the world around us. But, if in terms of Matthew 6:33, we believe the Kingdom of God and his righteousness or justice must have priority in our lives, then we will not have a self-centered view of salvation.

Our personal salvation is not the focus and goal of the Gospel but simply the starting point. The goal is God's Kingdom, His purpose for humanity and the world. The essence of man's fall is his will to be his own god, his own source of law and morality (Gen. 3:5). All too often men retain aspects of this original sin in insisting that their salvation is the center of God's plan. God seeks His own glory and purpose, our place in His plan is not at the center.

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